Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Famed Cartoonist Earns Lifetime Achievement Award

By Nao Braverman
Ojai resident Sergio Aragonés is the creative mind behind cartoon images that have been viewed by readers and comic book aficionados around the country and abroad.
Though Aragonés’ humorous illustrations have been seen by millions, he can still sit comfortably at his favorite local coffee shop without being recognized.
“I’m fortunate to have a very anonymous career,” he said.
Though comic book fans have seen his “Marginal Thinking” illustrations in the margins of Mad Magazine pages, or followed the catastrophic mishaps of his comic book antihero Groo the Wanderer, they know Aragonés by name and not by face, and that’s how he likes it.
The Ojai cartoonist never imagined he would be so successful, nor did he aspire to do much more than simply publish his work. But more than 50 years into his illustrating career, Aragonés has won almost every major award offered to a cartoonist including the Will Eisner Hall of Fame Award and the National was due to an error by the post office he said.
After years of contributing to Mad, Aragonés teamed with Mark Wordsworth in the early 1980s to create Groo the Wanderer, one of the few creator owned comic books, about a barbarian who was never able to get anything right.
Groo the Wander was one of the few humorous comics in an American market full of adventure heros. No one had yet written about barbarians, said Aragonés.
Though Aragonés has a degree in architecture from the University of Mexico to satisfy his parents he never thought of becoming anything but a cartoonist.
Fortunately, talent and circumstances worked in his favor and he has been able to lead a comfortable life doing what he loves.
But there are some small changes to his work routine with advancing technology. Though now scans his images into a computer before sending them to a colorist, he has essentially been doing the same job for 53 years and enjoys every moment of it.

1 comment:

afternoon coffee drinker said...

Congratulations Sergio -- you are one of the finest human beings I have ever met, and you make me laugh, too.

The world is a better place for you being in it